Traxxas RC Vehicles Buying Guide

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Traxxas RC vehicles are some of the most powerful RC cars, boats, and trucks available. They’re also made with high-quality components that won’t break or rust after a few months of use. But choosing the best possible model can be challenging if you’re not familiar with this brand.

I am sure you will find this Traxxas Buying Guide useful and hopefully learn something.

Traxxas RC vehicles are available in several types, ensuring that users can enjoy them in almost any environment. Beginners and professionals can enjoy Traxxas RC vehicles, though it often helps to have at least a basic understanding of RC mechanics before investing in one.

In this guide, I’ll discuss the benefits of owning a Traxxas RC vehicle and what to look for when buying one. I’ll also share my thoughts on the most positive and negative aspects of investing in these RC vehicles.

Benefits of Owning Traxxas RC Vehicles

The first question you might be asking yourself is, “Why should I invest in a Traxxas RC car or truck?” In truth, there are several notable reasons why you might want to purchase a Traxxas RC vehicle. 

Some of the most notable benefits of shopping for a Traxxas RC vehicle include:

  • Plenty of build options
  • High-quality components
  • Competitive top speeds
  • Easy-to-find replacement parts

When you select a Traxxas, you’re choosing speed, power, and quality. There are also dozens of different vehicle types and trims from which to choose. If you’re looking for a high-powered RC sports car or monster truck, Traxxas could be the ideal brand for you. 

Besides, if any of the parts ever break (which is unlikely), it’s easy to find and buy replacement components. If you’re a beginner that’s just starting with RC vehicles, a basic Traxxas model could be the perfect toy and tool to help you learn more about RC racing and mechanics. 

Still, let’s examine these benefits and discover what they mean for you and your shopping experience.

Plenty of Build Options

Whether you’re looking for an RC monster truck or waterborne RC boat, Traxxas has your back. They offer four core vehicle types and multiple sub-types, and model options. This abundance of build options makes Traxxas one of the most universally alluring RC brands. 

RC hobbyists that prefer RC cars and trucks may enjoy Traxxas more than other brands, as Traxxas primarily produces these vehicle types. Still, you can also invest in speedy Traxxas RC boats and a flying helicopter!

High-Quality Components

Unlike your average toy store RC vehicle, Traxxas cars are built to last. They’re made of rugged, durable plastics and thick, non-rusting metal parts. 

These high-quality components help Traxxas vehicles survive accidental bumps, crashes, and flips. These parts also help Traxxas RC vehicles reach impressive speeds.

Competitive top speeds are another reason why Traxxas RC vehicles are so beloved by passionate RC racers and collectors.

Competitive Top Speeds

The average RC vehicle might reach a top speed of about 15mph. But Traxxas vehicles are capable of achieving much faster speeds and in virtually no time at all. The Traxxas XO-1 can reach speeds of more than 100mph in fewer than six seconds!

Traxxas XO-1 1/7 Scale AWD Supercar with TQi 2.4GHz Radio & TSM, Black

Even the slowest Traxxas RC vehicles outpace the fastest department store options. And while your average budget-friendly RC car might break after a few weeks of usage, a Traxxas can last a lifetime. Part of this expanded lifespan is thanks to quality vehicle engineering and design. 

But another part stems from how easy it is to maintain and replace a Traxxas RC vehicle’s components.

Easy-To-Find Replacement Parts

Some of the easiest-to-acquire RC vehicles are also the most challenging to repair. But Traxxas is a brand that’s known for quality and customer support. 

Not only do Traxxas vehicles resist common breakage and natural wear and tear, but they offer users a comprehensive inventory of replacement parts and components. If your Traxxas vehicle ever experiences a mechanical or technical issue, you can quickly find the replacement component you need by browsing this inventory.

What To Look For When Buying a Traxxas RC Vehicle

While there are quite a few notable benefits of owning a Traxxas RC vehicle, choosing one can be challenging. There are more than 60 types and builds to choose from, and each option has specific pros and cons. 

When choosing a Traxxas RC vehicle for yourself, you’ll need to consider six influential factors: 

  • Vehicle type
  • Vehicle size
  • Vehicle speed
  • User skill level
  • Included tech features
  • Price

Your preferences can help guide you when choosing a vehicle type, size, and speed. However, you’ll need to stick to your budget and your skillset as well. 

After choosing an affordable, appropriate option for your skill level and selecting a vehicle type, you can consider technical features such as Bluetooth compatibility. With all these aspects in mind, you’ll be sure to find the ideal Traxxas RC vehicle for your needs in no time!

To help make your browsing process as quick and painless as possible, I’ve summarized all these primary factors into helpful sections. 

Not sure what vehicle type suits your needs? Unsure about the best top speed for your new Traxxas? Keep reading and find all the information you need just below.

Different Traxxas RC Vehicles available

When you’re browsing for a Traxxas RC vehicle, the first thing you’ll need to decide what kind of vehicle you’re looking for. After all, Traxxas offers four primary types of vehicles:

  • Cars
  • Trucks
  • Boats
  • Planes

To complicate matters slightly, almost every primary category contains several sub-categories. For example, if you’re choosing a Traxxas truck, you’ll need to decide whether you want a stadium truck, monster truck, trail truck, or short-course truck.

Still, some Traxxas vehicle types are far more straightforward. There are only three boat options available and a single flying helicopter vehicle. As such, the amount of time you spend selecting an exact type depends on your preferences and needs.

I’ve found that the RC enthusiasts who love Traxxas the most gravitate toward model sports cars and trucks. If you’re looking for a wide selection of flying RC vehicles, submersibles, or boating RCs, you’ll likely want to look elsewhere.

That said, you could build an impressive lineup using only Traxxas cars and trucks. And if you’re a relative beginner to RC vehicles, it might be a good idea to start with a Traxxas boat, helicopter, truck, and car.

That way, you can learn more about each vehicle type while also building a solid opinion on one of the most beloved RC vehicle brands.

Cars

The first of the Traxxas vehicle types that I want to explore are cars. Now, when it comes to Traxxas RC cars, shoppers have two essential options:

  • Buggies
  • Sports Cars

As you might imagine, the Traxxas buggies are built like flared, sporty dune buggies. They have a broad tire set and superior suspension that helps them navigate off-road environments with ease and speed. The Traxxas sports cars, on the other hand, are a little more flashy.

Simply called ‘On-Road Cars,’ these RC vehicles range from a racing-style Ford Fiesta to a drop-dead gorgeous Corvette Stingray. Most of these vehicles have minimal ground clearance, making them perfect for paved roads and tracks but useless on unpaved surfaces.

The prices and skill-appropriateness of these cars vary significantly from model to model. If you’re looking to get a new RC car, you’ll want to consider these differences before making a purchase.

TIP: Beginners may have better luck with the Traxxas buggies, as they're relatively affordable and easy to maneuver. The on-road options can be pricier and more challenging, and several of the fastest sporty models are better suited to advanced and professional operators. 

Trucks

Perhaps the most diverse of the Traxxas vehicle types are Traxxas RC trucks. There are four primary sub-categories from which to choose:

  • Stadium Trucks
  • Monster Trucks
  • Short-Course Trucks
  • Trail Trucks

Put plainly, if you’re interested in operating an RC truck, Traxxas could be a fine choice. Their to-scale monster trucks are bound to impress, and their short-course trucks are powerful enough to rival RC car speeds. 

Traxxas monster trucks are also available in both two-wheel-drive and four-wheel-drive model trims, as are short-course trucks. Trail trucks (also called crawlers) typically feature massive tires that easily handle off-road conditions. 

Stadium trucks resemble souped-up pickup trucks with monstrous wheels. These RC vehicles are an excellent combination of the best qualities of short-course trucks and monster trucks. Depending on your intended use, you might prefer one model type more than others.

I think you will love my post comparing two most popular trucks: Traxxas Slash vs Rustler

Boats

There are three different Traxxas RC boats from which to choose, and they’re all excellent choices for beginners and amateurs. The Traxxas Blast is the most affordable and can travel at speeds upwards of 50mph.

Traxxas 38104-1 Blast Fully Assembled Remote Control Electric Racing Boat with Radio System, NiMH Battery, Charger, and Waterproof Speed Control, Green

Or, you could choose the Traxxas M41 Catamaran. It’s a little pricier, but it’s also capable of making sharper turns than the Blast. All three Traxxas RC speedster boats are capable of handling mild waves and foamy surf.

Planes

Though Traxxas only produces and sells a single flying RC vehicle, it’s a fantastic beginner option. The LaTrax Alias has four motors and spinning blades to help it take flight. This model could be an ideal drone practice RC vehicle. 

And with brightly colored LED lights, you won’t quickly lose this flying vehicle in tree branches or brush. However, if you’re looking for a working scale model of jetliners, commercial airplanes, and small planes, you might feel disappointed with Traxxas’s minimal selection.

Traxxas Vehicle Scales

Not all RC vehicles are the same size. If you plan on racing with your RC vehicle, you’ll want to understand how scale impacts your driving experience. Some competitions only allow specific scale sizes. It’s also crucial to consider the size if you’re hoping to get the fastest possible RC vehicle. 

After all, the larger your vehicle, the more mass it needs to move to reach high speeds. Traxxas offers their RC vehicles in three primary scale sizes:

  • 1/7
  • 1/10
  • 1/16

This means that you can find RC vehicles that are 1/7th scale, 1/10th scale, and 1/16th scale. The higher the second number, the smaller the vehicle is bound to be. 

Most of the Traxxas RC vehicles are 1/10 scale models. The only 1/7 scale option is the zippy XO-1. There are also a handful of specialty scales that Traxxas offers, including a “Pro-Scale” model and a few 1/18 scale vehicles.

If your main focus is speed, you may want to choose a 1/16 or a 1/17 vehicle. But if you’re ready to conquer off-road terrain, a 1/7 truck might be the better choice. 

Of course, it’s crucial to note that most Traxxas vehicles fall between these two scale extremes. It’s also a good idea to point out that every type of Traxxas vehicle is capable of reaching unbelievably high speeds.

Traxxas Vehicle Speeds

Passionate RC vehicle hobbyists (myself included) continually come back to Traxxas because of their high-speed models. No matter which vehicle type you choose, Traxxas motors won’t disappoint.

Let’s take a brief look at the fastest and slowest Traxxas vehicles to discover more about how these options perform. I’ll go ahead and start with the slowest Traxxas vehicles to give you a good idea of the base speed these RC vehicles move at.

Slowest Traxxas Vehicles

When it comes to strolling, Traxxas fails. The vast majority of their vehicles are made for high-speed driving, and very few offer maximum speeds less than 70mph.

The three slowest Traxxas vehicles are the:

  • 1/16 Summit 
  • Ford Mustang GT
  • Slash

The 1/16 Summit is a beginner-level electric all-terrain monster truck. It can reach top speeds of about 20mph, sometimes more. This vehicle is built to tackle off-road conditions, and various obstacles can impact its overall acceleration rate.

The RC Ford Mustang GT is an on-road car with minimal pavement clearance. It’s also a beginner-level car, though it’s slightly pricier than the 1/16 Summit. However, when you consider how stylish this model is, the price difference begins to make sense. Still, this fast-looking option has a maximum speed of about 30mph.

Finally, there’s the Slash vehicle. The Slash comes in a few different styles, but the two-wheel-drive model has a maximum acceleration rate of about 30mph.

58034-1 - Slash: 1/10-Scale 2WD Short Course Racing Truck. Ready-to-Race with TQ 2.4GHz Radio System and XL-5 ESC (FWD/rev). Includes: 7-Cell NiMH 3000mAh Traxxas Battery

Other styles are far more powerful but also better suited to advanced and intermediate operators. The standard Slash model is an excellent choice for beginners. 

Fastest Traxxas Vehicles

While slower RC vehicles can be helpful for beginner-level RC operators, they’re not very impressive compared to more powerful options. The faster an RC vehicle moves, the more I want to own and operate it, which is why I’ve spent the last several months eyeing the fastest Traxxas car, the XO-1. 

However, this exceptionally speedy vehicle isn’t the only super-fast option. Generally, the fastest Traxxas vehicles are the:

  • XO-1
  • Rustler VXL with TSM
  • Bandit VXL with TSM

The XO-1 is, by far, the quickest of the bunch, with top speeds exceeding 100mph. But the Rustler and Bandit VXL models aren’t far behind. They have a top speed of over 80mph.

Traxxas 67076-4-ORNG Rustler 4X4 VXL: 1/10 Scale Stadium Truck

Notably, while the XO-1 is one of the priciest Traxxas vehicles, the other two speedy models fall within the most budget-friendly price range. This means that beginners and those on a tight budget have a chance to see a Traxxas fly across pavement!

Traxxas User Skill Levels

The simplest RC vehicles typically come with a straightforward remote control, a working electrical vehicle, and not much else. But professional-level vehicles and kits may include practical assistive applications and technologies. 

If you’re not familiar with operating RC vehicles, the more complex models may be challenging to master. Fortunately, Traxxas offers vehicles for all skill levels, including:

  • Amateur
  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced
  • Professional

When choosing a new Traxxas RC vehicle, you can use this system to help you choose the best possible model for your current skill level. Traxxas gives each RC vehicle a rating out of five to represent its operation difficulty. 

A rating of 1 is the lowest possible level, signifying that the vehicle is appropriate for amateurs. A rating of 5 indicates that the vehicle is an excellent choice for intermediate-level operators. And, as you’ve likely guessed, a rating of 9 or 10 is reserved for only the most challenging RC vehicles.

I’m going to quickly introduce you to some of the top picks for each skill level and discuss why they’re a solid choice. However, feel free to explore your preferences and favorite model types when shopping for a Traxxas RC vehicle.

Amateur

Slower, simpler vehicles tend to work best for amateur RC vehicle operators. In this case, the best possible option might be the 1/16 Summit mentioned above. With top speeds of around 20mph, it’s easily one of the slowest Traxxas vehicles. 

It also falls within the lowest possible price range. This vehicle is a four-wheel-drive model that’s entirely waterproof. As such, it’s a rugged option that amateurs and beginners are sure to enjoy.

Beginner

Are you looking for a sleek RC car for races around the block or the local track? If you’re a beginner-level operator and not keen on trucks, the Traxxas Ford Mustang GT could be a safe bet. 

While it might not be an excellent pick for off-road RC adventures, it’s just fast enough to keep beginners satisfied (top speeds of about 30mph), and it’s more affordable than professional, intermediate, or advanced-level models.

Intermediate

Intermediate-level operators are bound to feel comfortable using most Traxxas vehicles, as most qualify as appropriate for beginners and intermediate users. But the Jato 3.3 can introduce a few new mechanics to help inspire operators to learn more about RC maneuvers and techniques. 

Advanced

The Traxxas X-Maxx is the priciest of the Traxxas RC vehicles, but it’s also one of the most durable. This massive monster truck can tackle nearly any terrain with its four-wheel drive and 50mph+ speeds. But it’ll need an advanced-level operator to avoid accidental crashes and flips.

Professional

The XO-1 is the most challenging Traxxas RC vehicle to master. It’s also the fastest option and one of the most significant models with a 1/7 scale. Only attempt to conquer this overpowered vehicle after mastering each of the previous skill levels!

Included Tech Features

One of the many reasons Traxxas RC vehicle owners keep coming back to the brand is the array of hi-tech features. Many of the best Traxxas RC vehicles come with an intelligent selection of technical features, including:

  • Bluetooth capability
  • Cruise control
  • Stability management
  • Self-righting capabilities

These add-ons could become reliable tools for operators. For example, RC vehicles with Bluetooth compatibility give users the chance to customize their car’s operation remotely using their tablet or smartphone. 

Vehicles with cruise control and stability management can handle long strips of bumpy pavement without flipping or crashing. Understanding these unique technical options can help you choose the best possible Traxxas RC vehicle for your skillset and needs. 

Bluetooth Capability

Your average RC vehicle doesn’t come with Bluetooth capability. But there are more than two dozen Bluetooth-enabled and Bluetooth-compatible Traxxas RC vehicles. This feature allows operators to access their vehicle’s internal systems via the Traxxas app.

You can keep track of your vehicle’s statistics and settings by downloading and opening this app and accessing a comprehensive dashboard of tools and reports. If you’d like to make the most of your Traxxas experience and keep your vehicle in top-notch condition, this compatibility is bound to save you a ton of time and frustration.

Cruise Control

Several of the mid-range Traxxas trucks come with a cruise control feature. This hi-tech option helps lessen the amount of work that operators must do to retain control of their vehicle. Rather than focusing on several aspects at once, you can set a specific speed and concentrate on your steering, turns, and obstacles.

While the Traxxas cars lack this feature, many of the most attractive beginner-level trucks come with cruise control. One of the Traxxas build kits (the Traxxas TRX-4 Crawler kit) also includes a cruise control option. Why spend all your time watching your speed when you could relax and enjoy the show?

Traxxas 1/10 Scale TRX-4 Trail and Scale Crawler Chassis Kit with 2.4GHz TQi Radio

Stability Management

Traxxas has developed such a powerful stability management system that it has its own name: Traxxas Stability Management (TSM). Dozens of Traxxas RC vehicles come with this system, helping them avoid accidental rollovers, wheelies, and flips. 

Self-Righting Capabilities

One of the most frustrating things that any RC vehicle enthusiast could encounter is a flipped vehicle. Not only can flipping harm your RC vehicle’s exterior, but it can also lead to tedious mechanical issues due to lodged debris. 

To prevent accidental flips, it’s vital to have a self-righting feature. Fortunately, several Traxxas vehicles come with this option. 

The majority of self-righting Traxxas vehicles are monster trucks, short-course trucks, and stadium trucks. Interestingly, this feature is available in vehicles for all skill levels, so both beginners and professionals can enjoy the benefits of self-righting RC cars and trucks.

Traxxas RC Vehicle Prices

Traxxas RC vehicles aren’t cheap. While this can be limiting for those with tight budgets, Traxxas prices often reflect the quality of the vehicles. The majority of Traxxas RC vehicles fall into one of five prices ranges:

  • $200
  • $400
  • $600
  • $800
  • $1,000

The slowest and simplest vehicles tend to fall into the $200 range, and the fastest and most feature-rich options can cost more than $1,000. However, it’s crucial to note that Traxxas RC vehicles are made for long-lasting performance and designed with buyer customization in mind. 

Unlike department store RC vehicles, Traxxas vehicles can last for years, especially when maintained and repaired using Traxxas replacement components. Though this brand might not be the best introductory brand for RC enthusiasts, it’s a beloved option among hardcore hobbyists. 

Traxxas RC Vehicles Pros and Cons

Now that you’re familiar with pretty much everything you need to know about choosing and buying a new Traxxas RC vehicle, I should review some of the positive and negative aspects of this brand.

After all, a Traxxas RC vehicle is an investment. If you’re on the fence about purchasing one of these powerful boats, trucks, or cars, you’ll want to weigh the pros and cons. Let’s examine some advantages of owning one of these RC vehicles, as well as a few of their drawbacks.

Pros

  • High-quality RC vehicles that typically have long product lifespans
  • Shoppers can choose from a wide selection of vehicle types and body styles
  • Many Traxxas RC vehicles can reach astounding speeds that rival competitor models
  • There are Traxxas RC boats, cars, and trucks for every level enthusiast; Beginners and advanced RC users can both enjoy these RC vehicles
  • Quite a few Traxxas vehicles come with hi-tech features to keep them stable
  • Some Traxxas RC vehicles come with Bluetooth capabilities that allow you to use your tablet or smartphone as a tuning device
  • It’s easy to find and purchase Traxxas replacement parts and components
  • Unlike other RC vehicle makers, Traxxas ensures that each vehicle looks identical to its full-scale, real-life counterpart

Cons

  • Traxxas RC vehicles can be pricier than other RC vehicles
  • Owners are expected to perform maintenance on their Traxxas vehicles, including an initial calibration
  • Some of the Traxxas vehicles have limited model or trim options, and there’s only a single flying Traxxas vehicle

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